Over Fourth of July weekend, I went up to Maine to M’s family’s lakeside camp. We went running one day, and stopped to pick wild raspberries on the side of the road. When we were done, I noticed a large dog tick climbing up my leg. I squashed it, checked the rest of my body, and found no more.

Several days later, I found a deer tick in my hip. It was removed by a licensed professional, and I didn’t worry too much about it. The next weekend, I suffered what I hoped was a summer cold: congestion, coughing, aches, and general crappy-feeling. The alternative was that the B. burgdorferi bacteria was coursing through my body. It went away, and I almost forgot about the episode. Last night, I discovered a large, red bullseye rash at the location of my bite, the classic Lyme disease symptom.

The good news: early diagnosis equals a very good prognosis. Three weeks of twice-daily antibiotics will almost certainly result in no long-term effects other than a boring medical story.